ZAMBOANGA CITY – Fighting erupted Thursday between pro-ISIS group Abu Sayyaf and army soldiers in Sulu province in southern Philippines, the military said.
It said the clash erupted in Panglayahan village in Patikul town after soldiers ran into a group of Abu Sayyaf leader Radulan Sahiron. The fighting lasted 40 minutes. “The encounter resulted in one enemy killed and slightly wounding of two soldiers. Engaged troops are on hot pursuit of the fleeing enemy,” it said in a statement.
Just early this week, soldiers also clashed in Patikul’s Bangkal village and killing 2 militants, one of them Barak Ingog, helped faciliate twin suicide attacks by an Indonesian ISIS couple on a Catholic church in the capital town of Jolo in January this year that killed and wounded dozens of people, mostly civilians and soldiers.
The other slain gunman, Nasser Sawadjaan, was a nephew of Abu Sayyaf leader Hajan Sawadajaan. Security forces mounted massive operations in Sulu since early this year as part of President Duterte’s order to the military to destroy the Abu Sayyaf, whose leaders pledged allegiance with ISIS. The operations had resulted in the recovery of 2 Indonesian and a Malaysian fishermen held by the Abu Sayyaf on Simisa Island off Sulu. However, two of the hostages, Malaysian Jari Abdullah, eventually died in hospital in Zamboanga City from a gunshot wound, and Hariadin drowned while escaping the fighting between troops and militants.
Sulu Governor Toto Tan deployed social workers and dispatched food aid to assist villagers who were affected by the military campaign. (The Zamboanga Post)
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